March 08, 2021, Publisher: Breath Hub
It is possible to relieve or completely heal pain with breathwork. In this article, we will focus on deep diaphragmatic breathing and Nadi Shodhana pranayama that are effective for pain relief and have many benefits when practiced regularly.
Irregular breathing can aggravate many kinds of pain and even cause some. However, with regular breathwork, you can regain your natural breathing habits. Once your breath finds its rhythm, it becomes easier for your body to heal. The pain is a symptom, it is your body giving you a message. This message tells us the chemistry of the area has changed or needs to change. The goal is not to get rid of the sensation but to heal the chemistry that caused the pain in the first place.
Deep diaphragmatic breathing
Diaphragmatic breathing is especially effective on chronic pain. It relaxes your body and reduces muscle tension caused by the pain, preventing the tension from making the pain worse. Using diaphragm muscles increases the lung capacity and improves breathing. Deep diaphragmatic breathing also helps to deal with depression, anxiety, and sleep disorders.
Place one hand on your belly and one hand on your chest and notice which hand moves as you breathe. You can repeat this practice for 5 to 10 minutes whenever you need.
Make sure to let your belly move naturally during this practice. As we breathe in, the diaphragm contracts and flattens, losing its dome-like shape and moving downward. This causes the abdominal muscles to expand. However, intentionally forcing the abdominal muscles to expand will weaken the diaphragm muscle and make it difficult to breathe with maximum lung capacity. Observe your breath carefully and relax your abdominal muscles to improve your breathing.
Also known as alternate nostril breathing, Nadi Shodhana is an ancient breathing technique. It is easy to incorporate in your daily life and offers many benefits, such as aligning the two hemispheres of the brain, calming the nervous system down, decreasing stress, balancing hormones, cleansing toxins, and relieving pain. For maximum benefit, alternate nostril breathing should be practiced daily for 5-10 minutes.
This practice incorporates alternating the breath between right and left nostrils with the help of the right hand. We’ll fold down our index and middle fingers and use our thumb to close the right nostril and the ring finger to close the left nostril. We’ll switch fingers after each inhale. The duration of the inhales and exhales will be equal. You can start with a count of 4 and gradually increase it as you become more comfortable.
You can find many other pain-relieving breath techniques in Breath Hub. In addition to pain relief, you can choose among hundreds of breathing techniques and sessions to improve your overall health and wellbeing. Start your breathing practice today!